Misconceptions about Auto Accident Litigation

Richmond Auto Accident Lawsuit Rules on Injuries

If you have had a car accident and subsequent lawsuit—in Richmond or elsewhere in Virginia—it helps to understand the state statutes. Auto accident lawyers in Richmond should be able to provide you with advice on your particular circumstances, but this page offers a brief overview of the rules and process.

It is understandable that if you are considering litigation in Richmond, car accident lawsuit procedures may seem confusing. The State of Virginia legislated new laws in 2007 that helped streamline things somewhat, mostly to the advantage of accident victims who could not afford court delays instigated by defendant insurance companies.

But other quirks one encounters in an auto accident lawsuit, in Richmond as much as the DC-metro area and the western parts of the state, may surprise many. For example, you can successfully sue for bodily damages even if the car itself was not badly damaged. What matters most is if medical records can link the accident to the injuries.

The process of filing a car accident lawsuit in Richmond

An automobile accident lawsuit in Richmond is quite like anywhere else in the United States. It may take a long time, but litigation is more effective at achieving a larger, more fair settlement for victims. Here is how it works:

  • Decide if a lawsuit is warranted. Insurance companies usually make an offer, sometimes early on, to preclude the possibility of a more expensive lawsuit. Generally speaking, larger-cost accidents should be rectified through litigation (i.e., call a lawyer).
  • Meet with an attorney. Experienced Richmond automobile accident attorneys understand how to assess short- and long-term costs incurred by the accident.
  • Your attorney files the lawsuit. Typically, a trial may be scheduled for one year following this date.
  • Pre-litigation affidavits are submitted. This forces medical bills, property damage estimates, police records and other information to be available to the court.
  • Depositions of all drivers and passengers are taken. Their testimony is crucial to success in litigation.
  • A pre-trial settlement is reached. In about 90 percent of cases, this is how it plays out. Otherwise, the case goes to trial.

Because the process is long and sometimes arduous, it is important to consider matters of timing and the likely long-term losses from the accident. Included in that are the significant expenses of ongoing medical care and loss of income. A Richmond auto accident lawsuit may take three or more years to settle, so it makes sense to work with an experienced auto accident attorney in Richmond who can determine lawsuit viability.

Common injuries that warrant an automobile accident lawsuit in Richmond

A Richmond automobile accident lawsuit is usually recommended when permanent disabilities (loss of limbs, eyesight, motor control, bowel control, among others) are present. Anything that gets in the way of earning a living or caring for self or family incurs major costs over time.

…Now let us work for you

If a loved one died as a result of an automobile accident in Richmond, or if you need help with a car accident lawsuit we want to hear from you. For a free consultation with a Douglas A. Lines, P.C. car accident accident attorney, call 804-762-4878 or contact us online.